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Allyson Felix: A Celebration of Motherhood

In this article, we will be exploring the inspiring story of Olympic track & field athlete Allyson Felix. Parts of her story include injustice and difficult trials, but her triumph over those things is truly encouraging to women everywhere.


In 2004, at 18 years old, Allyson Felix won her first Olympic medal for the US. After that, her track & field career skyrocketed. Her subsequent world records and gold medals were proof that Allyson was where she was meant to be. Even working through a devastating ankle injury in 2016, Allyson continued to dominate her competition and rise in world fame. Winning races, however, was not her only life-goal:


“Throughout my career, I always had in the back of my mind that I wanted to be a mother.”

When Allyson became pregnant with her daughter, she experienced a saddening lack of support from the Olympic running industry. Her long-time footwear sponsor, Nike offered her a 70% pay cut and would not fight to protect her against performance penalties due to childbirth. Unfortunately, this was not an uncommon response. Female athletes who were pregnant or who were performing post-pregnancy tended to see this type of opposition.


"I had all this fear surrounding starting a family, because of what I had seen. I had seen contracts be paused; I had seen my friends hide pregnancies to be able to secure new contracts.
I felt like maybe I was safe; maybe I had accomplished enough…I was wrong.”

After delivering Cammy, her beautiful daughter, Allyson found herself looking toward her fifth Olympic appearance, without a footwear sponsor. In addition to using her platform to speak out for maternal athlete protections, Allyson decided to start her own footwear label, called “Saysh.” Allyson and her brother, Wes became business partners and began designing women’s running shoes.


This shift allowed Allyson to be honest about what she saw, and to petition for reform in the women’s sports industry. Despite having won countless medals, Allyson sees her accomplishments in the maternal rights movement as even more meaningful.


“I understood the power of my platform, the power of my voice…”


In the 2021 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Allyson Felix became the most decorated track & field athlete in history, wearing her own shoe label. Her story became one of empowerment and triumph, especially for future mothers. While recounting her story, Allyson reflects on that feeling of seeing her daughter for the first time and understanding why maternal justice and equality matter:


“I remember very vividly just looking at Cammy. There was this moment where I was moved. It just felt like there’s no way I’m gonna let her and her generation take on this fight.”

Now, Allyson focuses on creating beautiful and functional footwear for women, future female athletes, and mothers. Her brand is built on equipping and empowering women to feel their best. 






LC Medical & Support Services knows that mothers are some of the toughest people out there. We also acknowledge the struggle women face when they are denied support throughout their pregnancy. Our goal is to provide women with the information, care and services they need so they can feel rightly supported. Our world is sadly prejudiced against mothers and pregnant women, but our message is that mothers are strong, capable and valuable.



Interested in supporting us? There are so many ways to do that! Visit our donor website to get involved with LC Medical & Support services: www.friendsoflc.org



 

Sources

Saysh - About Us Page. About Us (saysh.com)







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